STORYBOOK ENDING FOR FRENCH PLAYERThis was Marion Ricordeau’s last week on the Symetra Tour this season. Before the PHC Classic, she made the decision not to return to the U.S. to compete on the Symetra Tour because she wasn’t playing well and funds were dwindling. She had one goal in mind this week and that was to qualify for The Evian Championship in her country of France. Ricordeau drilled a five-foot birdie putt on 18 to slide into a second place finish.
“It feels unreal to qualify,” said Ricordeau. “After my round yesterday, I don’t want to say I lost hope, but I was thinking play your game, but you won’t make it, but still play and maybe you can get close.”
Ricordeau started with a three-putt par on one and then a bogey on two. Things weren’t going her way.
“I was like ‘oh gosh, what are you doing?’ to myself,” explained Ricordeau. “Something happened and I started making putts and it just worked. I was steady and focused to the end and I am so happy to be playing Evian. It is just unbelievable.”
Ricordeau caught fire between the fourth and tenth holes with five birdies during a seven-hole stretch. She made bogey on 14, but finished with birdies on 16 and 18.
“I was thinking about going home two weeks ago, but my mom told me to just stay here and try to qualify,” explained Ricordeau. “She told me something good is going to come out of this and she was right. I can’t believe I just made it, I have been struggling so much this year.”
The second place finish is her third top 10 of the season, but she had higher expectations after a full season on the LPGA in 2016.
Ricordeau stayed firm to her decision that this was her last Symetra Tour event of the season even though she jumped up to 23rd on the money list.
“I’m sure Evian will be happy to have one more French player,” said a bubbly Ricordeau. “I think it is even more special that a French player qualifies in America. I’m just so proud.”
BENYAPA WINS POTAWATOMI CUPBenyapa Niphatsophon finished in a tie for 31st to edge Erynne Lee in the final Potawatomi Cup points standings. She earns the $6,000 bonus and finished with a total of 705 points. Lee finished just behind with 697.5 points. Lee finished in a tie for 14th at the PHC Classic.
The Potawatomi Cup started in 2014 and it provides the players with a $40,000 pool of incentive money to compete for over the course of four tournaments sponsored by Potawatomi nation tribes.
The Forest County Potawatomi Indians is the band that sponsors the PHC Classic.
Niphatsophon finished T4 at the Four Winds Invitational, T2 at the Island Resort Championship, second at the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship and T31 this week to win the Potawatomi Cup.
She currently ranks second on the Volvik Race for the Card money list and is in prime position to head to the LPGA next year.